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Bretford releases enterprise guide for iOS deployments

A vendor of iOS charging/synching products has released an interactive e-book that offers businesses an approach to configuring and managing iPads, iPhones and iPods.

"iOS Deployment: A Guide to Managing iPad, iPhone and iPod touch in Your Organization" is available a free download from Apple's iBookstore. The digital guide was created with iBooks Author, and designed so that it accept updates as the iOS product line changes in the future, according to the vendor, Bretford Manufacturing.

[ MORE: 'Surprise' Mac app quickly configures iOS devices ]

Chicago-based Bretford offers a range of "technology-enabled furniture." Among its Apple-focused products is the business-oriented PowerSync product line, equipment that lets multiple iOS devices be synced and charged at the same time, with a single Mac.

The guide was written by Huey Ng, Bretford's business development manager, based on his experience, over at least two years, in helping business customers configure and roll out iOS devices. Bretford routinely helps PowerSync customers in planning iOS deployments and Ng advises project managers on best practices for those projects and has often helped customers during the planning phase.

The new guide was written to distill that experience. It covers a range of topics, including activating and configuring iOS devices, managing documents and media, app ownership, and backing up and restoring data. A basic promotional video from Bretford gives an overview of the guide.

Enterprises need all the help they can get. Whereas Mac computers were for years usually only a niche product for enterprise, iPhones and iPads are by far the dominant mobile platform for business. Good Technology's "Q4 2012 Device Activation Report" found that 77% of all activations were for iOS devices. iPhone and iPad models had eight of the top 10 spots on the "most popular device list" for the quarter. iPhone 5 alone accounted for 32% of all activations for the period.

Apple itself offers business customers a range of iOS advice and resources, including this website focused on the iPad, and an online support center.

You can also check out Network World's "A sampling of BYOD user policies," with a selection of policies that can be used as templates for creating an enterprise use policy for employee-owned devices.

John Cox covers wireless networking and mobile computing for Network World. Twitter: @johnwcoxnww Email: john_cox@nww.com

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